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As a teen, I was always offended when my mother asked one of her favorite questions–Would you jump off a cliff if your friends asked you to?  If I had answered  honestly, I might have said, “Yes.”  Like most young people, I wanted to be accepted, cared for, and…well…special to someone.  Jumping off the proverbial cliff was a possibility if I could just gain that elusive acceptance.

I was like the sheep noted in a 2005 USA Today article.  Did you read it?  Imagine the setting.  A few thousand sheep dot the rugged, Turkish landscape.  Just as the sun begins peeking over the horizon, the shepherds–hungry and cold–leave their flocks contentedly grazing to make a quick trip into town breakfast.  But, one sheep–either desperate or stupid–wanders away and leaps over a cliff and to his death.  Sadly, 1,500 other sheep follow.   

Now a “mature” adult, there are times I still find myself sliding toward the slippery slope. But the Great Shepherd rescues me and restores me to His fold, a place of safety where all of my needs are tenderly met.  All believers have this same reassurance.  As 1 Peter 2:25 reminds us, “For you were continually straying like sheep, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls.”

Today, thank God for the times he has resuced you–whether you were at the edge of the cliff or already at the bottom. 

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